Farm Well

This, folks, is a well on a farm. I took the photo crouching down and focusing across the pipe leading away from the pump. These go down about 600 feet or so and usually pump about 1000 to 1500 gallons a minute. There are several aquifers in this valley here, and that’s one of the reasons why Salinas is called the Salad Bowl of the country. We farm, you eat. The next time you buy a bag of salad in the supermarket, remember this well.

Presto! First Two Indie Ebook Author Interviews

I’ve decided to start doing interviews of authors from the indie ebook segment of the publishing industry. And here I am, jumping in with the first two. Brian Kittrell, who writes horror, and Jason Matthews, who writes spiritual/sci-fi. I haven’t read their books, but that’s not the point. What I’m interested in doing here is simply spreading the word about the indie ebook revolution in general. Long live Ones and Zeros! Poor old Gutenberg. He’s probably doing a few revolutions in his grave as we speak/read/write.

The Fellows Hip: the Rise of the Gamers

A while back, an old friend of mine from grad school called me up and asked me to co-write a script for an indie film. He was out in Virginia, I was here in California. We wrote the script, batted it back and forth for a while, polished it up, and then I went on my merry way. He and some associates then did the hard part of the job. They went and shot the thing. Writing film scripts is not that hard. There’s a reasonably rigid formula to it. Shooting them? That’s a different kettle of slippery little fish.

The film is called The Fellows Hips: The Rise of the Gamers (here’s the IMDB page if you want to check out cast/crew). It’s a buddy-comedy movie about some high school gaming geeks who find meaning in life by getting into a Lord of the Rings video game contest. The story follows them as they road-trip it down to the convention and geekdom. We wrote the script to deliberately mirror events from the Lord of the Rings. And, yes, we did get the Saul Zaentz Company to sign off on the project. They’ve been known to sue people who take liberties with LOTR, as they hold the entertainment rights to the trilogy. As part of the film, we also won the collaboration of the guys at Turbine who do the MMORPG Lord of the Rings Online: Shadows of Angmar. I haven’t seen the final cut, but they were gracious enough to allow video game footage to be used in the film.

In addition to co-writing the script, I also wrote a song for the soundtrack. You can hear a rough cut of it here. Anyway, The Fellows Hip should be released sometime later this year. Keep an eye out for it!

Ag Advisory

I sit on our county’s ag advisory committee. We make recommendations to our county Board of Supervisors on matters concerning ag. Today, we had to discuss whether or not horse stabling is a compatible use with agriculture. Horse stabling on a cattle ranch. Aargh. This, folks, is a good example of how crazy California has become.

Humor and Hortiventury

I started writing a new book last week. It’s a humorous take on the science and pursuit of hortiventury. Hortiventury is a little-known part of the scientific community that involved hunting down fascinating flora in dangerous or remote settings. Most people don’t know, but Julius Caesar was a dedicated hortiventurist, viewing that more as his life-calling. Ruling the Roman Empire was a bit of a headache for him, but he recognized his responsibilities there, even though he would’ve gladly chucked it all for a lifetime of hortiventury. Atilla the Hun was another famous hortiventurist. Oddly enough, one of his personal chefs was the inventor of what we moderns call fudge.

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